Holly Hunter

Actress, Waitress
Petite, fiery, and altogether confident, Holly Hunter was an Academy Award-winning actress and producer who rose to prominence in the late 1980s and early 1990s with a string of roles in challenging and critically ... Read more »
Born: 03/20/1958 in Conyers, Georgia, USA


Actor (74)

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice 2016 (Movie)

US Senator (Actor)

Manglehorn 2015 (Movie)

Dawn (Actor)

Bonnie & Clyde 2013 - 2014 (TV Show)


Sangre 2014 (Movie)


Paradise 2013 (Movie)

Melanie Mannerheim (Actor)

Top of the Lake 2012 - 2013 (TV Show)


Jackie 2012 (Movie)

Jackie (Actor)

Won't Back Down 2012 (Movie)

Evelyn Riske (Actor)

Saving Grace 1994 - 1997, 2006 - 2009 (TV Show)


The 14th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)


Nine Lives 2005 (Movie)

Sonia (Actor)

The Big White 2005 (Movie)

Margaret Barnell (Actor)

The Directors 1998 - 2005 (TV Show)


Little Black Book 2004 (Movie)

Barb (Actor)

The 9th Annual Critics' Choice Awards 2003 - 2004 (TV Show)


The Incredibles 2004 (Movie)

Voice of Helen Parr/Elastigirl (Actor)

Levity 2003 (Movie)

Adele Easely (Actor)

Searching for Debra Winger 2002 - 2003 (TV Show)


Thirteen 2003 (Movie)

Melanie (Actor)

Down From the Mountain 2001 - 2002 (TV Show)


Moonlight Mile 2002 (Movie)

Mona Camp (Actor)

Down From the Mountain 2001 (Movie)

Herself (Actor)

Things You Can Tell Just By Looking At Her 2001 (Movie)

Rebecca (Actor)

Jesus' Son 2000 (Movie)

Mira (Actor)

O Brother, Where Art Thou? 2000 (Movie)

Penny (Actor)

Timecode 2000 (Movie)

Executive (Actor)

Nicolas Cage: Wild at Heart 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)


The 56th Annual Golden Globe Awards 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)


Living Out Loud 1998 (Movie)

Judith (Actor)

The 70th Annual Academy Awards 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)


Woman Wanted 1998 (Movie)


A Life Less Ordinary 1997 (Movie)

O'Reilly (Actor)

Cheetahs With Holly Hunter 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)


Crash 1997 (Movie)

Dr Helen Remington (Actor)

Inside the Actors Studio 1994 - 1997 (Tv Show)


The 54th Annual Golden Globe Awards 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)


The Screen Actors Guild Awards 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)


The 53rd Annual Golden Globe Awards 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)


46th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)


Celebrate Storytelling With Tracey Ullman 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)


Copycat 1995 (Movie)

MJ Monahan (Actor)

Home for the Holidays 1995 (Movie)

Claudia Larson (Actor)

The 21st Annual People's Choice Awards 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)


The 67th Annual Academy Awards 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)


The Way West 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)


The 14th Annual CableACE Awards 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)


The Firm 1993 (Movie)

Tammy Hemphill (Actor)

The Piano 1993 (Movie)

Ada McGrath (Actor)

Once Around 1991 (Movie)

Renata Bella (Actor)

The 41st Annual Emmy Awards 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)


The Three Little Pigs/The Three Billy Goats Gruff 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)


Always 1989 (Movie)

Dorinda Durston (Actor)

Animal Behavior 1989 (Movie)

Coral Grable (Actor)

Miss Firecracker 1989 (Movie)

Carnelle Scott (Actor)

Broadcast News 1987 (Movie)

Jane Craig (Actor)

End of the Line 1987 (Movie)

Charlotte (Actor)

Raising Arizona 1987 (Movie)

Edwina (Actor)

With Intent to Kill 1984 - 1985 (TV Show)


Swing Shift 1984 (Movie)

Jeannie Sherman (Actor)

The Burning 1981 (Movie)

Sophie (Actor)

A Gathering of Old Men (TV Show)


An Uncommon Love (TV Show)


Crazy in Love (TV Show)


Harlan County War (TV Show)


Roe vs. Wade (TV Show)


Svengali (TV Show)


When Billie Beat Bobby (TV Show)

Producer (1)

Thirteen 2003 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)
Other (1)

Festival in Cannes 2002 (Movie)

(Special Thanks)


Petite, fiery, and altogether confident, Holly Hunter was an Academy Award-winning actress and producer who rose to prominence in the late 1980s and early 1990s with a string of roles in challenging and critically acclaimed films. After a series of supporting roles, Hunter had her first starring role in the Coen Brothers' comedy "Raising Arizona" (1987), and that same year, she also earned an Oscar nod for her performance in "Broadcast News" (1987). Following an Emmy-winning turn as a fictionalized Jane Roe in "Roe v. Wade" (NBC, 1989), Hunter earned the biggest accolades of her career - as well as a Best Actress Oscar - for her renowned performance as a mute pianist in "The Piano" (1993). From there, she delivered quality supporting and leading turns in "The Firm" (1993), "A Life Less Ordinary" (1997), "Crash" (1997) and "Jesus' Son" (1999). In the new millennium, Hunter was exemplary as a frustrated mother in "thirteen" (2003) and enjoyed voicing Elastigirl in the Pixar hit "The Incredibles" (2004). She stepped away from the big screen to star in the short-lived, but critically acclaimed cable series "Saving Grace" (TNT, 2007-2010), proving that her extraordinary talents could make the successful transition to the small screen.


Arliss Howard Actor

Dated in the early 1990s

Charles Hunter

Died 1982

Opal Hunter


Janusz Kaminski Actor

Married May 20, 1995 Divorced Dec. 21, 2001

Gordon MacDonald Actor

Together since 2001 Co-starred in London's West End production of Marina Carr's "By the Bog of Cats"

Steven Spielberg Executive Producer

Briefly dated c. 1989; Spielberg directed Hunter in "Always" (1989)


Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh , Pennsylvania 1980



Played the teacher's union president opposite Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal in inner city school drama "Won’t Back Down"


Nominated for the 2009 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in Drama Series


Received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (May)


Cast in first starring role in a TV series, as a tormented police detective on TNT drama "Saving Grace"; earned Golden Globe (2007), SAG (2007, 2008, 2009) and Emmy (2008, 2009) nominations for Best Actress in a Drama Series


Played the deranged wife of Robin Williams in the dark comedy "The Big White"


Cast in the ensemble "Nine Lives"; Rodrigo García directed a series of vignettes, offering glimpses into the lives of nine women


Voiced the character Elastigirl in Pixar animation film "The Incredibles"


Co-starred in and produced coming-of-age drama "Thirteen"; received Golden Globe, SAG and Academy Award nominations for Best Supporting Actress


Portrayed Billie Jean King in ABC movie "When Billie Beat Bobby"; earned Emmy nomination


Earned an Emmy nomination playing the wife of a union-organizer in Showtime's "Harlan County War"


Reteamed with the Coen brothers for "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"


Played a pregnant bank teller in the female-driven "Things You Can Tell Just By Looking at Her"; received Emmy nomination (aired on Showtime in 2001 in lieu of theatrical release)


Played a recovering alcoholic romanced by a recovering drug addict in "Jesus' Son"


Returned to the NYC stage in Beth Henley's "Impossible Marriage"


Cast in leading role opposite Danny DeVito and Queen Latifah in "Livin' Out Loud"


Portrayed an angel in Danny Boyle's unsuccessful "A Life Less Ordinary"


Co-starred in the ensemble "Home for the Holidays," directed by Jodie Foster


Earned Best Supporting Actress Academy Award nomination for her role as a secretary in "The Firm"


Won numerous accolades, including a Best Actress Oscar, as the mute Ada in Jane Campion's "The Piano"


Offered Emmy Award-winning turn as the title character in HBO's "The Positively True Adventures of the Alleged Texas Cheerleader-Murdering Mom"


Reteamed with Dreyfuss for the romance "Once Around"


Won Emmy for playing a fictionalized Jane Roe in the drama "Roe v. Wade" (NBC)


Reprised off-Broadway role of Carnelle Scott for the feature film adaption of Henley's "Miss Firecracker"


Starred opposite Richard Dreyfuss in Steven Spielberg's "Always"


Landed first starring role in the Coen brothers' "Raising Arizona"


Earned first Best Actress Academy Award nomination playing a highly competent TV news producer in "Broadcast News"


Had supporting part in Jonathan Demme's "Swing Shift"; role was substantially cut before the film's release


Originated role of Carnelle in Henley's off-Broadway play "The Miss Firecracker Contest"


Made TV-movie debut in "Svengali" (CBS)


Broadway debut, Beth Henley's "Crimes of the Heart"


Film acting debut, "The Burning"


Off-Broadway debut, "Battery"


At age 15, invited to a summer apprenticeship at a repertory theater in upstate New York

Began acting in her high school drama club

Bonus Trivia


When she was a struggling actress living in NYC, Hunter shared an apartment with fellow aspiring performer Frances McDormand.


"With Holly, there's no bullsh*t. Period. You know where you stand. If you spend three minutes with her, you get to see who she is." – Albert Brooks, Hunter's co-star in "Broadcast News, quoted to New York magazine, Dec. 14, 1987


"She has a relentless drive to find the truth in whatever part she's undertaking. There's no character, no matter how demented, that Holly couldn't play and make her sympathetic" – director Michael Ritchie on Hunter to USA Today, Nov. 12, 1993


"I actually think the more personal information you have about an actor, the more you have to carve out for yourself when you go to a movie and see them in it. More and more movies have been pressured to allow reporters and TV cameras to come onto the set while you're working, and I find that a real violation. Acting, for me, is the last vestige of doing something that I would like to feel really naive about, and I like to feel very protected when I'm doing it. It's an arena where you may not know what the answers are, may not know what a scene is about when you're doing it. It's a creative place and it's too private, too personal to be violated." – Hunter to Jodie Foster in Interview magazine, November 1995


"I want to change how I approach acting as I get older. I want there to be a reason I'm playing certain characters at certain times. I think characters come to me when I'm ready to play them." – Hunter quoted in The New York Times, Oct. 11, 1998


"I like to take chances professionally because it helps me personally. Because I'm taking them, too, I'm not separated from my professional self. They're just in different context from my own life." – Hunter to USA Today, Nov. 11, 1998


Hunter served as a juror at the 1999 Cannes Film Festival.


"Good scripts are very rare for an actor and particularly an actress. It is a crap shoot as to whether you will read any good material. Good material is an 'almost never' situation. I have actually read a hundred scripts without reading a good one." – Hunter quoted in The Daily Telegraph, May 8, 2000


"I have a natural intensity that is just a part of who I am. And I think my intensity comes from somewhere else. I think that my intensity comes from being profoundly deaf. I have no hearing at all in my left ear." Before there is time to ask more, she says quickly, "I was nine, the mumps." Then she adds, "I think that has made me an acute listener and acutely tuned in to what people are saying." – from The Daily Telegraph, May 8, 2000


"She's a thoroughbred. When you ride a thoroughbred you know you're on a great horse, you're not just getting from A to B." – Tony Bill, director of "Harlan County War" to Us Weekly, June 12, 2000


"Having that sense of entitlement is something that most actors actually lack. Entitlement is a very, very fragile area for artists, actors in movies especially, who have tremendous amounts of money, status and trappings can begin to feel that that’s what entitles you. Whereas, training really enhances and supports the more fragile side. Your imagination and approach, your desire to explore, all of those things I think are enhanced by going to a school like Carnegie, or Yale, or any of the top schools." – Hunter to Venice magazine, 2003


"As I've gotten older, lead roles have definitely begun disappearing. I've still managed to have a career that's fulling, but not like this. Not like Grace. Because Grace is over forty and fully in charge." – Hunter on her role in "Saving Grace" to Emmy magazine, Issue No. 3, 2008